Saturday, September 04, 2010

Saturday Miscellany

It's Saturday, and I am duly grateful. And busy.

One of my friends is on a (medically directed) super-restrictive diet.

My bike ride today used up about 700 calores (according to the heart monitor, which isn't exact, but close enough for this). That's almost as many calories as my friend is allowed in a day. I don't know how my friend is going to do this; I'm vaguely worried, but since I know zilch about medical stuff, I'm hoping the medical folks know what they're doing.

I went "running" last week, and then measured the distance with my bike a day or two later. The "run" I measured was a half a mile out and back, and I also measured a little further. The first day, I "ran" some and walked some (in my new FiveFingers, so I was a little worried that I might get sore).

Yesterday, I ran the half mile out and a little more, then ran most of the way back (but not all). I think I have a little more confidence with my FiveFingers, rather than having improved my fitness substantially in a week of mostly not exercising.

Here's what gets me. I biked 18 miles this morning at just under 15mph, in a fair cross wind, and my legs and all were happy. It's just over an hour of pretty much constant pedaling. That might lead you to think I'm reasonably fit, and you'd think I could manage to run for 15 minutes straight, wouldn't you? Well, I haven't yet. But the half mile goal was a good one for yesterday.

Here's how backwards I am: most people burn a LOT more calories when they run for a given time than when they bike that same time. But I'm such a slow "runner" that I burn more calories on my bike in 15 minutes than I do "running" for 15 minutes. (At least according to my heart monitor, which again, probably isn't precisely accurate, but should have about the same inaccuracy for running and biking.)

I've made an executive decision that when I talk about "running" from now on, I'm going to call it "going outside to play."

I've never been good at running. In grade school, when we had to run a 50 yard dash for the president's fitness thing (does that still exist?), my friend and I were so slow together that the PE teacher made us do it again because she didn't believe anyone could be so slow.

But I've always been very good at "going outside to play." It's fun to go outside to play. There are adventures when you go outside to play. There are places to explore! And my FiveFingers seem to make things interesting and fun (it's very cool to feel the softness of the grass underfoot, for example, or to run where there's soft pine needle build up), so I'm thinking I'll have more success if I just "go outside to play."


  1. I was always a slow runner, too. Way slow. I've always been really into swimming, though, and I was thinking about taking that up again. I just wish that I could do it when the gym wasn't so busy. I don't mind sharing a lane with one or two other people, but the Y where I'd go frequently has four or five people in a lane. It's very irritating. The time when the pool isn't busy is when the childcare is closed, so that's out. Bummer!

    Anyway - I started rambling. I wanted to ask what the sole of the five fingers is like if you can feel the ground beneath you. When I saw your pic of them, I thought they looked pretty comfy. I wouldn't have thought to exercise in them, though. How do you like exercising in them as far as getting support, etc?

  2. i'm terrible at running. bad at any exercise, except maybe swimming, so i guess i should get around to doing that on a schedule, no? or at least walking more.

    share your concerns about your friend's super-restricted diet. one of my friends did that [also medically supervised] and lost an awful lot of weight quickly, but it was terrible for her -- really ramped down her ability to cope, made her ill, and she gained back way more than she lost. it has been many years and she is quite heavy now, but i think that diet made her feel so insane that she never wants to go near that bad place again.

    weight, diets -- i think all a friend can do is listen and lend appropriate support as needed. i am also above an ideal weight, and know i hate it when people lecture me about diets, excercise, try this, etc. but the time may come when you can support her in losing the diet and trying something more normal, like moderate exercise, eating regular healthy food, and stopping eating when she's had enough.